Ever since Miles told me all the names of all the characters on his cartoons I decided to severely limit the kids TV time. It was kind of a wake-up call of sorts. I thought I was limiting their TV time already. I took a step back and thought about it. It was a lot of TV watching. All the " here and there's" sure do add up to a lot of time. Amara would wake up before anybody and turn the TV on and might get 1 hour in before the rest of the house was up. When Miles got up it was only fair that he got to watch a show-or 2 before breakfast. So, by 8AM Amara should have been done watching TV for the day. They would both watch 1-2 more shows after school, depending on what I was doing ( cooking, cleaning or whatever). And then the hour before bed( Dora and Diego). Yep, that's way too much according to the experts. This does not include the ESPN that Matt used to turn on as soon as he came home from work. After all, adult shows don't count right?!?! Wrong! Any moving picture - cartoons, video games, computer shows, prime time TV etc. counts as TV time.
We now limit TV time. It was easier for Amara to understand. Miles on the other hand, well he is getting used to it now. The TV is set to the music station now so when Amara gets up in the morning she can still turn the TV on, but there are no moving pictures just music. I also have www.pandora.com on the computer now. We can listen to music for free while the kids eat and play. I use TV as a reward for Miles and his potty training at the moment. Because going #2 is such an issue these days- the kids can watch 1 (30 minute) show every time he goes #2 in the potty. This is about an every 3 day occurrence. The kids were able to watch a bit more TV during the Winter Olympics because it was the Olympics! I need to make sure I don't keep coming up with more excuses like that though just because I want to watch TV. If Amara is home and Miles is sleeping she and I might watch a show on The Food Network together every once in a while too. Matt has also stopped turning the TV on, so that helps immensely with limiting TV. I feel good about our decision. We LOVE music in our house and it is on more than it is not. The kids are always singing and dancing around and also make requests. We are reading a lot more and doing more crafty things ( I am not crafty at all, but I try). I like the fact that viewing a TV show is more special for the kids now instead of the norm if that makes sense. I am hoping we can stick with it. I think it will get even easier as the weather warms up and we can spend more time outside. So far, so good.